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EMC makes Legato a backup threat

When EMC Corp. bought Legato Systems Inc. it gave the software maker instant credibility in the eyes of end users. But how has Legato made backups better given the range of EMC's technology resources?

In this interview, GlassHouse Technologies storage consultant Natalie Mead explains how Legato has improved its reporting capabilities. She says proper training is the key to optimizing backups with NetWorker, and she also offers a preview of the presentation she'll make at the upcoming Storage Decisions conference in April. Does NetWorker have any technological weaknesses compared with competing software?
In the past, what Tivoli Storage Manager and Veritas NetBackup have had over Legato NetWorker has been reporting capabilities. Prior to the release of NetWorker Management Console, users had to query databases. NetWorker Management Console uses java interfaces to configure the NetWorker server and has reporting capabilities that are lacking in the out of the box Legato NetWorker software. In general, NetWorker doesn't have reporting capabilities and this separate add-on product is where users can generate reports and manage multiple data zones from one interface. I think Legato realized that reporting on backup performance and knowing when backups fail was important when a number of ex-Legato employees started a company called Bocada. Bocada does a wonderful job of backup reporting. What can users expect to learn from the presentation you'll make at Storage Decisions?
My presentation will cover all aspects of the backup process, from your LAN, SAN and drivers, to how clean your network needs to be, because it all directly relates to how NetWorker and other backup products perform.


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EMC is an enormous company, and there are resources galore that Legato can use.
Natalie Mead
storage consultantGlassHouse Technologies What are the most common problems that users experience with NetWorker?
While Veritas' NetBackup has great media management and media reporting capabilities, the key to Legato's media management is understanding how NetWorker works. Media management with NetWorker directly relates to your familiarity with the software. You really have to understand how you're going to go about backup and, in reality, backup plays second fiddle to everything else. Nobody seems to care about backup and, therefore, nobody receives training on specific backup products. Why does everyone care about ILM? Hasn't ILM been around for years?
I don't think ILM is a new concept, but prior to issues raised by Sarbanes-Oxley and what happened on September 11, customers didn't really worry about the ILM aspect of storage management. Today, it seems ILM is everywhere. Microsoft is getting into it, and Legato is quoting that it has ILM covered. With all of the regulations coming along, it's suddenly on the minds of users more often because it's in the news. Upper-level managers now understand how important compliance is and want to be informed on how well applications and backups are running, and [on] what [their IT organizations] are doing to archive data. In your opinion, how might EMC's acquisition of Legato translate into more features and functions in NetWorker? Are users more apt to buy NetWorker now that Legato has backing from EMC?
The acquisition has two angles to it: a business angle and a technology angle. The acquisition helps Legato from a technology angle because the purchase of Documentum is really going to improve Legato's archiving capabilities through access to more options for database management. EMC is an enormous company, and there are resources galore that Legato can use, [such as] access to more software and hardware platforms. From a business angle, the acquisition of Legato has made EMC a one-stop shop in the information life cycle management (ILM) market. Everyone cares about ILM now and, instead of going to multiple vendors, users can just go to EMC.

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